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Thursday 11 April 2013

Recipe - Classic: Brussels Paté (Liver Paté)

by Simon Fernandez of ferdiesfoodlab

Over the years I've learnt a lot by simply watching others (chefs or not) experiment or create something they've
done a million times! This one I picked up from my mum. I remember thinking, when I found out how this is made, "Is that it? Wow how simple! Wow I didn't realise how much butter is in that!!" But it couldn't be simpler. 

Brussels paté is made from pork liver often with brandy, in this recipe I use chicken liver, some madeira and butter. Truly delicious!!

ingredients (make 800g-1kg)
for the paté
450g      chicken liver
200ml  madeira
750g butter (clarified)
10g  thyme leaves (bruised)
olive oil for frying

for the garnish
small branch of thyme

apparatus / equipment

food processor

Put butter on to clarify, include the thyme leaves: Cut the butter into chunks and melt in a pan with the thyme. As soon as it bubbles turn off the heat and leave for 20-30 mins so the flavour of the thyme infuses into the butter. Use salted butter as then no further seasoning is required.

Cook the liver on a gentle heat. The aim is to cook the liver evenly throughout, no crispy outer surface. This will give an even texture once it's blended - no tough bits, no pink bits!! (mit cuit - just cooked)

Put the cooked liver into a food processor.
If the butter has set warm it a little until it's liquid, skim off any scum from the surface and remove, any thyme twigs. Pour 2/3 of the clarified butter (the fat floating on top) into the food processor leaving the white liquid at the bottom in the pan.
Run the motor until you have a smooth paste. That's the paté made!! : )

Pour it into ramekins and make the surface flat. Seal the paté with the remaining clarified butter, by pouring a thin layer over the top of the paté, and leave it to set. Consume at will!!

thinking ahead
This will keep in the fridge for a week if it's sealed. For months in the freezer.

to serve
Bust out some French stick, (toasting optional) some cornichons (little green pickled cucumbers), mayo, tomatoes, a little cucumber. Give everyone a glass of madeira and let them help themselves. Really nice home made paté for about 20mins, if that, of actual effort!

This recipe is a great base to create all sorts of variations. For example: Adding parsley, and caramelised onion at the blending stage and then mixing it with (cooked) chicken thighs or mushrooms - fabulous, and makes a great starter.


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More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes

More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes
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